Jelly Roll Justice and his wife, Patti, enjoy spending their time in the redwoods of Northern California and at their home in New Orleans. "We have three fantastic adult children and four wonderful grandchildren," he says with a proud smile.
"WWOZ became our favorite station when we came to our first Jazz Fest in 1990. We instantly fell in love with New Orleans and haven’t missed a Jazz Fest since. We moved here in 2001 and began volunteering in the office at WWOZ. I started as a substitute DeeJay in early 2005, but after Katrina and Rita, when so many DeeJay’s were displaced, I was given several very early morning shows."
Jelly Roll believes the genesis of all American culture starts with the blues and jazz: "From Leadbelly to Snooks Eaglin, from Louis Armstrong to Terence Blanchard, the rhythms of Louisiana music have infused every aspect of what is our country, our society, our soul. While I love playing the old masters, I am amazed by the next generation of musical geniuses from New Orleans."
Before coming to WWOZ, Jelly Roll Justice was an civil liberties attorney and educator on labor law, disability law, ethics and philosophy. He represented such diverse clients as Cesar Chavez, the High Chief of the Republic of Palau and the National Football League Players’ Association.
A former law school dean at the University of California Berkeley, Jelly Roll went on to teach social workers and public health professionals at Cal for seventeen years. During that time, he taught for a year at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and received two Senior Fulbright Lectureships that took him to India and Sri Lanka for a year each. He lectured in philosophy for ten years at Sonoma State University as well as making presentations nationally before retiring.
"As for New Orleans and WWOZ," the Justice opines, "the best is yet to come!"